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About Sint Maarten
Half Dutch and half French, the island of St Maarten has some of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean. Dutch Sint Maarten has the cruise port, the international airport and the duty free shopping, and the best places to stay in Sint Maarten tend to be either large and luxurious resorts or smaller, cooler hideaways.
Sint Maarten's capital Philipsburg, and the main tourist area, Simpson Bay, are where you'll find the shopping centres - Sint Maarten probably has the best shopping in the Caribbean - plus casinos and tourist-friendly nightlife. There are also a number of excellent restaurants.
Much of the Dutch side favours waterfront resorts and condo communities, but if you're looking for something quieter try the far end of Simpson Bay Beach, where there are a handful of cool spots.
Sint Maarten also has the Caribbean's biggest zoo, and some old colonial Dutch monuments, which lend plenty of charm.
It's quite fun to cross the border back and forth - the challenge is in finding it!
The Hotel Guru's selection of the best places to stay in Sint Maarten covers the whole range from basic B&B to large beach resort with every facility imagineable!
For Caribbean character
- The Oyster Bay Beach Resort is beautifully located, right on the border of the French and Dutch sides of the island, and full of Caribbean character. Penthouses have fully equipped kitchens, and balconies complete with BBQs. This is a large and lively resort which also has its own night club, as well as restaurants and bars.
- The Horny Toad offers just eight unpretentious apartments right on the beach, each with their own kitchen and living area. Great for active travellers.
- Divi Little Bay Beach resort is a large resort on its own peninsula, and with its own excellent beach access. It's also got three pools - one of which is just for kids, three restaurants and a spa.
- The Pasanggrahan Hotel is a cheerful, historic looking guesthouse in the capital, Philipsburg. It's also right on the beach, and offers a range of room and suite sizes - three of which have kitchen facilities. It is also very reasonably priced, with rooms from only £61 per night.
- The Seaview Beach Hotel is a basic B&B just off the beach and within walking distance of Philipsburg's main attractions. They have rooms with between one and four beds, starting from just £46 per night.
For value chic
- La Vista Beach Resort is a good value beach resort with accommodation in studio or two room apartments. All the rooms have balconies with sea views and you're almost right on the beach and close to numerous restaurants and entertainment options.
- Mary's Boon on Simpson's Bay, Sint Maarten, is a great value option, which offers more sophistication than you'd expect for the room rate, which starts at just £46 per night. It also has direct access to the beach.
- Holland House in lively, central Philipsburg has good facilities and stunning views over the bay. The decor in its 55 rooms is city chic and you're close to the main attractions of Philipsburg.
Best Hotels in Sint Maarten
Seaview Beach Hotel 42 rooms from $75Philipsburg, St Martin
A very basic B&B type hotel for the budget minded traveller set just off the beach and within walking distance of all Phillipsburg's attractions. Comfortable rooms, terraces, breakfast. Rock bottom prices and rooms that have 1, 2, 3 and 4 beds. An ideal base for families on a budget.Value chicSights nearby - Situated in the centre of Philipsburg, close to all attractionsViews - Great views from hotelSailing - Can be booked nearby.
Mary's Boon 36 rooms from $75St Martin
A very good beach option for those who enjoy sophisticated interiors. Rooms and suites are boutique with four poster beds, colourful walls, and patios facing the sea. Swimming pool, excellent restaurant & small spa. Direct access to the beach. Ideal for couples and families. Superb value for money.Value chicOn the beach - Simpson Bay.Views - Great views from hotelSailing - Can be booked nearby.
Pasanggrahan Hotel 35 rooms from $99Philipsburg, St Martin
A cheerful and historical guesthouse directly on the beachfront makes an ideal spot for a family, groups of friends, or those on a budget. A range of rooms, suites, and a penthouse (3 bedrooms) have kitchens, balconies, and panoramic views. Steak and seafood restaurant and fishing trips.Families - The penthouse has three bedrooms and a panoramic view from the rooftop.Fishing - The hotel provides deep sea fishing escapades.Value chicViews - Great views from hotelRecommended by - Frommers
Horny Toad 8 rooms from $118St Martin
A small unpretentious collection of apartments directly on the beach. Each unit has its own kitchen, living area, and you can walk directly out of your door onto the beach. No eating options available, but ideal for a couple or family who want to do their own thing. Excellent value.Quirky - A small, unpretentious spot with an excellent reputation.Value chic - Superb value for moneySailing - Can be booked nearby.Seaside - Ideal for a seaside holiday.Recommended by - Fodors
La Vista Beach Resort 18 rooms from $135Simpson Bay, St Martin
A good value beach resort for those on a budget. A collection of studio and two-room apartments have kitchens, balconies, and sea views. A short walk directly onto the beach or to the large swimming pool. Close to all the restaurants and activities around. An ideal base for families or couples.Views - Fantastic seaviews from all angles.On the beach - Overlooks the crystal waters of Lay Bay.Surfing - Suitable beaches nearby.Swimming Pool - Indoor/outdoor
Holland House 55 rooms from $170Philipsburg, St Martin
A lively spot with great amenities and stunning views over the bay below. Contemporary chic rooms have all the mod cons and in-room massages. Large wine cellar, pool, bar and restaurant, and easy walking distance to the town's main attractions. A good choice for a family.Views - Fabulous bay views.Beach LifeSights nearby - Cyrus Wathey Square, Philipsburg Courthouse, and Yoda Guy Movie Exhibit.Lively - A lively venue in the evenings for cocktails.
Oyster Bay Beach Resort 190 rooms from $195St Martin
Plenty of Caribbean character and luxurious living on a lively beach resort. Chic rooms, suites, and penthouses have fully equipped kitchens, BBQs and balconies. Swimming pools in tropical settings, ocean vistas, spa and beauty centre, restaurant, and laid back romance.Views - Great views from hotelBeach LifeRomantic BreakLively - Beau Beau is a lively night spot at the hotel.Recommended by - Fodors
Divi Little Bay Beach resort 265 rooms from $215St Martin
A large and attractive beach hotel with all the amenities on a pretty peninsula; ideal for families and beach goers. Contemporary chic rooms, suites, and family rooms in creams and pastels, three pools (one for kids), three restaurants, a spa, and easy access to the beach.Outstanding location - Set on a peninsula of its own with unrivalled beach access and seaviews.Beach Life - Swimming pools, beaches, and ocean views.Views - Great views from hotelWindsurfingRecommended by - Fodors